NASHVILLE — Hospitals and clinics across Tennessee and the United States are reportedly using revenue from one failing federal entitlement, known as the 340B program, to subsidize two other failing government programs — Medicare and Medicaid. The 340B Drug Pricing Program passed into law in 1992 and was designed to help poor and uninsured people get prescription drugs.
Problems with the program have gotten so severe they may cause pharmaceutical companies to discontinue important research and development programs into creating lifesaving drugs, said Sally Pipes, president of the Pacific Research Institute, a San Francisco-based think tank.
“It could be drugs for Alzheimer’s, cancer, diabetes, or Hepatitis C,” Pipes said.
“If these companies haven’t gotten the financial incentive to do what they’re doing then they’re going to stop and that’s going to hurt not just the people who are uninsured and low-income. All of us will be hurt,” Pipes said.